Why Your Business Needs a Website
In order for any business to succeed and thrive, it needs to have a website. Most businessowners have known this for well over a decade now, but there are still a few who have held off on creating a site for one reason or another. Others might have created a static website years ago and believe that it is all they need. Neither of these outlooks will be beneficial for a business. You need to have a website today, and it needs to be capable of getting peoples’ attention.
Explore the reasons that you need to have a quality website for your business, and what exactly it is that constitutes quality.
1. Customers Expect It
This is truly the number one reason that you need to have a website today. Think about what you do when you are looking to find a new product or service. Chances are that you will head onto the Internet and look up some companies that offer them. You will then go to their sites to check them out further.
Your potential customers are doing the same thing, and if you do not have a website, or if your website is not up to par, those potential customers are never going to be actual customers.
Today, there are very few businesses that can operate without a presence on the web. Customers simply expect that you will have a website, and you need to be able to meet those expectations. Fortunately, getting a website today is relatively simple, and you can hire out the work that you can’t do on your own.
2. Build Your Brand With an Online Presence
Part of your marketing is to always build your brand. You want to make sure people know your name and your logo. Having a presence on the web will help with this, but you need to do more than just set up social media accounts. You really do need to have a website, as this can act as the anchor point for everything else that you are doing online.
The website is the hub where you create and post content to your blog, information about your products and services, and information about your company and your mission. This will help to solidify your brand online, along with the posts on social media and the other online work that you do. When people want to find out more about you, they can visit your site. This helps to grow and expand your brand in ways that weren’t possible before the Internet, at least not without a lot of cost.
3. More Credibility for Your Business
A good website also has the potential to provide your business with added credibility. A site that looks and works well and that has a good ranking in the search engines will have far more credibility among visitors than someone who has a cut and paste site with poor quality content. The site helps to show people that you are a legitimate business, and they are more likely to do business with you. This is particularly true if you have a secure site.
The content that you have on the site, such as the posts on your blog, can help to position you as an authority in your field, as well. If you sell outdoor sports equipment, for example, and you have a blog that talks about the outdoor life and the types of gear that you sell, people are far more likely to have faith in your company than if you just have a storefront with no additional content.
4. Highlight Products and Services
If you have a company that sells various types of products or services, having a website makes it easy for you to provide your customers with more information before they purchase. You can highlight various items or services that you have for sale for your blog, for example. You could also have shorter writeups on the product and service pages. This is going to help you in several ways.
First, it will help you with your SEO rankings. Using the right keywords and phrases within quality content helps boost your rankings. This will make your site easier to find, and the content will also provide your visitors with useful information on the items that interest them. This can help to boost sales, and it is relatively easy to do.
Additionally, you can have testimonials and reviews on your site. These serve to let those who are thinking about buying from you know more about the quality of your products and services.
5. Keep Customers Informed
A website also happens to be a great way to keep your customers informed of everything that is happening at the company. You can, not only, let them know about new products or services, but about upcoming projects you are working on, special features for customers, any interesting news that might be happening in your field or at your company and more.
Whether you have good news, bad news, an update to a product, or any other information that you have to get out, your website is a good vehicle for it. You can write a post on your site and you can let people know about the post through social media and provide them a link. This allows you to have longer posts than you would if you were simply to post the news in a social media post.
6. It Is Always Available
Another great benefit of having a website is that it acts as your billboard and storefront around the clock, 365 days per year. If you have a brick and mortar store, it is open when your store is closed and it is always working for you. Of course, there is the risk that the website itself could go down, but this tends to be a relatively minimal risk, as long as you are working with a good webhost that has a high uptime guarantee. This simply means that they promise that your site is going to be up the majority of the time. There are companies that can offer uptime guarantees of 99% and higher.
7. Get Customers Engaged
When you have an audience that is more engaged, they feel more invested in your company. The website is the ideal channel for customer engagement because it can allow customers to have a way to interact with the business in a direct manner. This interaction should be easy for customers to utilize.
For example, you may have some forms where they can request a free quote or schedule an appointment. You should also have ways for the customers to get in touch through email and perhaps by phone. If you have a blog – and you should – they can leave comments there, where you can reply to them.
When you make it easy for consumers to engage with your company, they are more likely to do so. Engagement can help to breed familiarity and trust, as well.
8. Create a Competitive Advantage
You want your customers to be able to find your business instead of your competitors’. Having a website allows this to happen, as long as you put in the effort to create a quality site. Having a substantial amount of information about the products and services you offer, as well as the brand and personality of the company can help to provide your business with an edge over the competition. The more information you add to the site that is relevant the better. It can allow you to stand out from the other competitors in your field and area.
9. Improve Customer Service and Save Time
One of the most essential pages you will want to have on your website is an FAQ page. This will provide you with a list of questions and answers that your customers have asked in the past, or that you anticipate they will ask. This page will be able to head off many of those similar questions that would otherwise end up going right to the customer service department. This saves time for the customers, as well as you and your customer service employees.
You should be sure to update the FAQ page regularly when you notice that other questions are starting to be asked regularly. Additionally, you will want to check the other pages on your site and make sure you are providing visitors with all of the information they need to make a decision. If you have good information on the site, there will be fewer questions.
10. Generate Leads
A good website will help to generate leads for you through calls to action. If you are running a PPC (pay-per-click) campaign, for example, the landing pages on your website will have these calls to action that encourage the customer to take the next step. This next step can vary based on your current campaign, but it might be asking them to sign up for a newsletter, requesting that they schedule an appointment, or asking them to make a purchase.
Websites can be fantastic for lead generation even when you don’t have a PPC campaign in progress. This is due to your SEO work which helps you to show up in the search engines when people are looking for certain keywords. The calls to action on the site are what helps to start leading those customers through the funnel.
11. Get Ranked in the Google Search Results
People need to know about your business if they are going to make a purchase and become a customer. Without a website, this is extremely difficult to manage, but having a website can make it easier thanks to search engines like Google. When you have a website and blog that has been built with SEO in mind, you will find that your site starts to rank higher and higher for your keywords and key phrases. This means that when people put in those keywords to the search engines, your site is more likely to come up toward the top of the list.
A good site with excellent content will help you get ranked in Google and other search engines. It has the potential to provide you with far more visitors and customers to your site.
12. The Competitors Have Great Websites
You can be sure that your competitors already have websites that are up and running. There is a good chance that they have high-quality sites, as well. If you haven’t taken the time to build a site yet, it means that your business could be losing customers to the competition. Take some time to look at the competing websites to see how they are doing things. You don’t want to copy them exactly, but you do want to see the types of pages they have, the types of content they have, and how high they rank in the search engines. Find out what they are doing and then do it better. This way, you can outstrip the competition.
The Elements of a Great Website
A quick look around the web will let you find plenty of terribly designed websites that are not consumer friendly. You have probably visited several of these sites in the past and likely clicked away from them before wasting too much time. What was it about the site that you didn’t like or that didn’t work for you? You will find that it is those same types of issues that people might not like about your website design.
When building a website or updating your current site, it is important to create a site that is going to please those visitors. To help do this, it is a good idea to have a clear and simple web address that will be easy for the user to type into a web browser. In addition, the site map should be easy to navigate, so the customers will know where they are on the site at any given moment, and how to find their way to other pages that they want to visit. The website should also make it clear relatively quickly what your company is and what you do.
Additionally, contact information should be easy to find and it should be on all of the pages. Many customers will not want to look through all of the pages trying to find the contact information, and they might not notice even when you have a page specifically for contact info. Therefore, having the information on each of the pages will help to alleviate this problem.
The website should also be visually pleasing to the eye. Having too many colors that compete with one another or text that is too small or in an illegible font is a surefire way to make some visitors leave without giving your site a second glance. You do not need to have audio and video that plays whenever someone comes to the site either. When this starts to play automatically, it can be annoying for many visitors.
What types of pages should you have? While the necessities might differ somewhat from one site to another, there are certain types of pages that you will likely want to have no matter the type of site you are running. These pages include:
- About Us
- Services or Products Pages
- Testimonials or Reviews
- Contact Page
- Latest News
The content that you have on the site needs to be well thought out, too. You want to make it as easy to read as possible. Your SEO friendly content should be broken into paragraphs that are relatively short because people do not want to read long walls of text. In addition, utilize headers and bullet points. You might also want to highlight or bold certain phrases or words.
You also have to consider the type of content that you put on it, not just how it looks as this will help your SEO, and it will help to find and retain visitors. The content should be information that is somehow important and relatable to the people who would be visiting your page.
Get Help for Your Website
If you find the idea of putting together a website daunting, and keeping it up to date just as problematic, you are not alone. There are many out there that simply want to run their business and they don’t like the work that goes into creating and maintaining a website and all that it entails. For those businesses, there is some good news. You can work with professionals that can take care of not only the creation of the site, but also the upkeep, SEO, and perhaps even some of the writing on the website if needed. There are professionals that can help you with every aspect of your site, and it is better to utilize those services than let your website languish.
Don’t run the risk of not having a quality website. If you don’t have a site, your competitors will have the advantage, and you will not be able to expand your audience.